Catfisher sentended to five months in custody

31/08/2017

Robert Brown, 29, from Portsmouth was sentenced on August, 31, 2017 to five months in custody today at Portsmouth Magistrates' Court after pleading guilty to six offences of fraud by false representation after he lured two men into giving him money after creating false accounts on social media, a practice referred to as 'catfishing'.

Senior Crown Prosecutor, Nick Hoyle for the Crown Prosecution Service in Wessex said: "Robert Brown is a liar who put together a scam where he lured two men into giving him money by creating fake profiles on dating websites.

"He targeted the first victim by posing as a young woman called Fran via a dating website and then chatted to her on Whatsapp. One of his first messages was ‘see I am real’ then he sent photos of her face and in a state of undress. ‘Fran’ aka Robert Brown said that she would send more if the victim would pay her money. He then pretended the money had not gone through. In total the victim sent £600.

"Not only did he defraud the victims of their money but he also gloated to them at the end of his scam. Over a 24 hour period he defrauded the first victim, a 27 year old man, of £600 and at the end of his scam he sent a voice message to the victim saying: ‘Thanks for the money mate ‚ĶHahaha Gutted’.

"After luring the second victim, a 29-year-old man, into giving him more than £1000, he laughed at him sending the following message saying 'Hahaha, I know you sad xxx thanks its (sic) Dean haha’'.

"Both victims said in their victim personal statements that they have been left distressed, depressed by what happened to them, and that they find it difficult to trust anyone. One of them is also struggling to recover from their debts due to the fraud.

"We hope that this prosecution will bring them some comfort that justice has been done."

Notes to editors

The second victim, a 29-year-old man contacted him via another dating website. Robert Brown used the same modus operandi and this time created a fake profile under the name of 'Sammieandi'. Robert Brown, pretended to be a woman who had no money to pay her rent. The victim who described himself as being vulnerable and gullible as he was going through a difficult time sent the money. Robert Brown/Sammieandi said that she was going to lose her house and needed £200. Each time the victim sent money, the defendant said that the money had not arrived and asked for the money to be sent again. Sammieandi was also offering sex in exchange of the money. He then created other profiles making up more stories as a result the victim gave him a total of £1860.